Former Sheboygan Mayor Bob Ryan facing two sexual assault charges
SHEBOYGAN- Former Sheboygan Mayor Bob Ryan has been charged with two counts of misdemeanor sexual assault.
The Sheboygan Press reports (http://shebpr.es/I3HNXz) the charges stem from the same drinking binge in Elkhart Lake last July that triggered a recall election and led to his ouster from office in February.
Ryan and his attorney did not immediately return phone calls seeking comment.
Ryan's tenure as mayor was marred by a sexual harassment lawsuit and multiple allegations of drunken, boorish behavior. He acknowledged in December 2011, after the Elkhart Lake incident that he's an alcoholic. "There was absolutely no criminal action on my part in Elkhart Lake," said Bob Ryan at that time. "There was some very embarrassing action on my part."
When TODAY'S TMJ4 asked him about the sexual assault claims in December, Ryan said he didn't molest a woman. Now, he's facing two counts of fourth degree sexual assault.
Sheboygan Alderman Scott Versey worked with the special prosecutor who brought the information to authorities. "This came to fruition because of the investigation we pushed for, but as far as the individual allegation, we had no idea," said Versey.
Voters are hopeful new information can cut through the rumors. "I don't feel comfortable with the choices he was making. I don't think it was mature," said Colleen Hilke.
Other people are shocked charges took this long. "It amazes me how long it takes to get things done," said Scott Schaefer. "On the other hand, had he got re-elected, it probably would have moved forward much quicker."
Court records that appeared online Friday show Ryan was charged Thursday with two counts of fourth-degree sexual assault. He faces a maximum of nine months jail and a fine of $10,000 on each count. He's is due in court April 23.